FAH/PHIL Guest Lecture – “What rational epistemic akrasia says about us” by Prof. Neil Sinhababu, National University of Singapore, Singapore


Speaker:

Prof. Neil Sinhababu, National University of Singapore, Singapore

Date:

13 Sep 2019

Time:

18:00

Venue:

E21-3118

Description:

Abstract

It’s possible to rationally believe that p and also rationally believe that it’s irrational to believe that p. Such cases of rational epistemic akrasia are elusive among those who accept truth-based norms for belief. But they can easily occur among pragmatists about epistemic rationality, who think we should believe what has the best consequences. I’ll present such a case, involving a pragmatist who believes that she would be happier if she could believe that her imaginary friend really existed, but who still finds herself unable to believe that her imaginary friend exists. This example shows that normative judgments don’t play any special role in epistemic reasoning — contrary to the assumptions of several metanormative theories.

Bio

Neil Sinhababu is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the National University of Singapore. He defends the Humean theory of motivation in Humean Nature (2017) and in articles in Philosophical Review and Noûs. He has also published on philosophy of mind, epistemology, Nietzsche, and romantic relationships with people in other possible worlds. He received his Ph.D from the University of Texas at Austin and his B.A. from Harvard University.

Audience:

All are welcome

Language:

English

Enquiry:

Philosophy and Religious Studies Programme
Tel: (853) 8822 4768
Email: fah.philosophy@um.edu.mo